Hospital Shadowing in Spain

Image of Hospital Shadowing in Spain
Four and six week programs where students shadow doctors to gain professional experience in the medical field. Earn credit, build confidence, and be immersed in a new culture.
Location: Spain
Language of Instruction: English
Term: Summer
Program Type: Internship
Open to non-KU Students: No
Fulfills KU Core 4.2: No
Fulfills KU Core 5: No

  • Spend the summer in Spain shadowing doctors four days per week (for 20+ hours) over a 4 or 6 week period
  • Learn first-hand about an international publicly-funded healthcare system
  • Build confidence in a hospital setting through extensive observation of physician to patient contact
  • Gain a competitive edge in graduate school applications, domestic health related internships, and a broadened perspective on the medical vocation
  • Earn KU internship credit for your shadowing experience
  • Experience the rich culture and cuisine of Spain through weekly group excursions and group meals

The University of Kansas (KU) has partnered with Atlantis, which focuses on providing AAMC-compliant physician shadowing in an international setting, to offer a 4-6 week Hospital Shadowing Program in Spain. Atlantis Fellows are afforded the opportunity to experience global healthcare by shadowing doctors in a different specialty each week for at least 20 hours per week. This provides an ideal learning opportunity for pre-med and pre-nursing students as well as those interested in clinical health areas such as physiology, developmental biology, exercise science, medical diagnostics, microbiology, neuroscience, physical therapy, and other allied health fields.  Fellows will gain extensive observation experience in a hospital setting, a broadened perspective on the medical vocation, and a comparative lens to examine global healthcare. 

Fellows will shadow four days per week (a min. of five hours daily) from early morning to early afternoon.  Shadowing specialties vary by location and Fellows typically shadow in pairs. Though Fellows can request specialties of interest, surgery and other departments are not guaranteed. Department availability depends on the hospital and doctors’ schedules.

Each Friday of the Fellowship is reserved for an outing with the whole Fellowship group. Past excursions have included hikes, visits to local museums, sporting events, boat tours, beach trips, kayaking and even taking the train to explore another nearby city. Each excursion includes the transportation and one group lunch or dinner and is planned and led by the program’s site manager.

Program locations within Spain are not yet finalized and will be announced at a later date.

The Summer 2022 program dates are as follows:

4-Week Program    June 4 - July 1, 2022

6-Week Program    June 4 - July 15, 2022

The hospital shadowing experience is for-credit and graded. Credit is available through the academic departments listed below. Due to contact hour requirements, some courses are only available for the 6-week program. All courses have variable credit hours (1-3), so each participant selects how many credits they wish to enroll in.  Please note, however, that a minimum of 3 credits is required to be eligible for summer financial aid.

BIOL 490 - Biology Internship & Practical Applications (available for up to 3 credits on both the 4 and 6 week programs)
Open to students of any major and level.

HNRS 496 - Honors Internship (available for up to 2 credits on the 4-week program and up to 3 credits on the 6-week program)
Open to students enrolled in the University Honors Program.

HSES 335 - Clinical Field Experience (available for up to 3 credits on both the 4-week and 6-week program)
Open to Community Health and Exercise Science majors.

LA&S 490- Internship Exploration (available for up to 3 credits on the 6-week program only)
Open to students of any major and level. Fulfills Core Goal 6.1 Integration and Creativity if taken for 3 credits.

PSYC 483 - Undergraduate Internship in Psychology (available for up to 2 credits on the 4-week program and up to 3 credits on the 6-week program )
Open to Psychology majors and minors.

Participants will be housed in furnished university residences, hotels, or apartments.  Units are single-gender and typically double-occupancy with shared bathrooms and common spaces.  Towels, linens and internet are provided.  Transportation costs between the program housing and hospital are included as well as airport transfers at the beginning and end of the program. 

A light breakfast is provided from Mon-Fri, as well as three weekly group meals at local restaurants, one of which will be lunch on the excursion day. For most lunches, fellows buy and prepare their own food or stop in a local cafe for an inexpensive sandwich.

SAGE is dedicated to creating international engagement opportunities that meet the needs of all our students and providing resources to support you through the process of studying abroad. Study abroad is achievable for students of all identities including our BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ students, students with disabilities, and students with religious/non-religious viewpoints. Before selecting a program, consider how your identities may impact your experience abroad in unique ways and talk with your Program Coordinator about any program-specific concerns. Students with documented disabilities should discuss any accommodation needs with their Program Coordinator early in the planning process.

Additional Resources

Check our Identity Abroad page and resources listed below for information specific to you and other students who may be on your program.

This program is open to students of all undergraduate levels pursuing a career in healthcare.  A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required. Space is limited and spots will be filled on a first-come/first-serve basis so early application is encouraged. 

After applying to the program, an Atlantis Admission Coordinator will conduct an interview with you to discuss your application, career goals in healthcare, as well as your interest in pursuing medicine as a career and your interest in the program.  Interviews last around 20 minutes, and take place over Skype or Zoom.  Atlantis is looking for participants with a genuine passion for healthcare, good communication skills, an altruistic attitude, and professionalism.

Please note: the majority of participants are not fluent in Spanish, however, because you will encounter the local language while shadowing and becuase doctors have varying levels of English fluency (if at all), Fellows are encouraged to have at least a basic understanding of Spanish.

Lastly, please note as well that Atlantis (the program provider that KU partners with for this program) requires full COVID-19 vaccine, fully administered at least two weeks before the program start date, in order to participate in programs.